Posted in Asian Food, Bowls, Curry, Indian, International vegan cuisine, oil free vegan recipes, Plant Based, Vegan

Vegan Curry Recipe ~ Butternut Squash, Roasted Cauliflower & Chickpea Curry

This weather has been so all over the place lately that it makes it difficult to meal plan. Okay the truth is that I’m not much on meal planning, our Midnight Tokyo Diner nights have been working out incredibly for the past few years so we get tons of ingredients, many of them fresh and then pantry staples, and then we can decide from one night to the next.

But with food shortages and shipping delays it’s harder and harder to get what you expect to find in the grocery stores in April. For example, there has been a TON of butternut squash lately which I love, but for me it usually means soup like, Squash & Lentil Stew. Or cookies. Or cake. Those are my go to recipes for squash, but sometimes I feel creative and make Vegan Spinach & Squash Queso Dip or Squash Blondies.

But I wasn’t in the mood and the weather was just insane. It was super warm and we went for a long walk without jackets one day and the next it was gray and gloomy and super chilly. And the only thing to like about a cold and gloomy day is cold weather vegan food. Chili and soups and stews and casseroles are all great vegan meals when the temperature dips and I knew when The Hubs asked for cauliflower curry, exactly what I would do.

Roasted Cauliflower & Butternut Squash Curry

Crispy vegan roasted cauliflower & butternut squash curry

This isn’t a quick vegan dinner but the good news is that the oven does most of the work.

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Posted in Asian Food, Bowls, Grains, Indian, International vegan cuisine, oil free vegan recipes, Plant Based, Vegan

Easy Vegan Dinners ~ Spiced Chickpeas & Rice

We’re all so busy all of the time that we’re often on the lookout for easy vegan recipes, right? I mean, for example I’m committed to the cause, I annoy my friends and family and all that, but some days I want something delicious, vegan and easy. Whether it’s an easy vegan salad or my favorite Easy Vegan Colcannon, sometimes easy is the priority.

Of course, I don’t mean easy like frozen pizza or other vegan junk food that doesn’t quite hit the mark in terms of taste, calorie friendliness or satiety. I mean is this something I will enjoy and not regret when I’m finished eating.

When it comes to this easy plant based vegan recipe, you won’t have any regrets, except that there isn’t enough for seconds. But you can easily double this recipe to make four servings.

So let’s not waste any time and get right into these saucy spiced chickpeas and rice. You can thank me later. šŸ˜‰

Indian spiced vegan chickpeas and rice

If you want to forego the sauce, simply toss the chickpeas in dry seasoning and pop them in the air fryer or the oven. Otherwise, keep reading to get the recipe.

Continue reading “Easy Vegan Dinners ~ Spiced Chickpeas & Rice”
Posted in Asian Food, Bowls, International vegan cuisine, Vegan

Gochujang Spiced Vegan Chicken, Mushrooms & Rice

Okay guys, so I have just discovered the easiest, peasiest Asian style vegan dinner recipe on the planet. Maybe discover is a strong word, but I happened upon a few similar recipes that were decidedly not vegan and decided that they had the makings of a super delicious lazy vegan dinner.

Why lazy? Well, put simply, the past couple years have been exhausting. Not only did we move to a place with limited vegan food options right before 2019 got under way, but the only improvements in my small-ish town have been in terms of vegan options at the grocery store.

That means more cooking. More experimenting with vegan recipes. More time in the kitchen.

Which I love.

Mostly.

But it would be nice, every once in a while, to go out where someone else does the cooking. Where there are appetizers and cocktails and maybe even dessert before the bill.

But that’s not on the table unless we schlep all the way to Bucharest which…no.

So, anyway…here is yet another lazy vegan recipe. Gochujang spiced vegan chicken & rice.

Vegan chicken & rice, Asian style.

When I say easy vegan recipe, I mean emphasis on EASY. The ingredient list in this recipe is short and sweet.

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Posted in Asian Food, Bowls, Grains, International vegan cuisine, Vegan

Vegan Egg Roll in a Bowl

Hello fellow foodies! I’m going to keep today’s post short and sweet because like my American followers, I am gifting myself with a vegan Thanksgiving feast. It’s been a few years since I’ve done the whole Thanksgiving meal but my Romanian in-laws are excited-ish so I have a bit of work to do.

But first, Egg Roll in a Bowl.

Why?

That’s simple. It has been an uphill battle to find vegan egg roll wrappers at stores here and online. Okay, they are abundant online but as much as I love egg rolls, I don’t need 125 wrappers. Then I stumbled upon thousands of vegan recipes for egg roll bowl and egg roll in a bowl and I thought to myself, “Why not?”

So now you are all caught up.

Easy vegan egg roll bowl

The best thing about having all the yummy goodness of an egg roll but in a bowl on a bed of rice? No deep frying, no air frying, no frying involved. At all.

So how do you make this deconstructed vegan egg roll recipe?

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Posted in Bowls, International vegan cuisine, Pasta, Sauces & Creams, Sides, Vegan

Vegan Seafood Pasta ~ King Oyster Scallops & Creamy Garlic Wine Pasta

Well I’ve finally done it. I have jumped on the bandwagon to try a dish that I have REALLY been looking forward to trying on my own, while all the vegan bloggers in the world have been able to try this dish. I’m not jealous or bitter, not at all, but I have to tell you that I was seriously stoked when my partner and I were strolling the produce section at Metro (Romania’s version of Costco) and what did I happen upon but King Oyster mushrooms!

Instantly I knew that this was my moment. My chance to see if these King Oyster vegan scallops were as tasty and amazing as they seemed.

They are. No, they’re not. They are better, but only if you’re not expecting for a mushroom to taste like a creature that lives in the sea.

But I did it. Yay, I frickin’ did it y’all!

How to make vegan scallops & pasta.

There are two schools of thought–apparently–when it comes to making these vegan scallops. Some have advised slicing the mushrooms and marinating them overnight while others say that thirty minutes or more will suffice.

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Posted in Asian Food, Bowls, Curry, International vegan cuisine, Potatoes, Vegan

Aloo Keema ~ Vegan Mince & Potato Curry Recipe

I love a good curry. Who doesn’t? I mean, you get tons of vegetables and rice steeped in delicious and vibrant flavors, sometimes spicy with your favorite vegan meat alternative and it’s just a big bowl of goodness. Unlike soup, I am never opposed to eating a curry in the heart of summer of the depths of winter.

And I recently discovered Aloo Keema, a dish that originated in Pakistan/Northern India that has the simplest of ingredients: mince, potatoes and rice with bread if you choose to double-carb it.

The flavors of the dish really appealed to me so I figured, why not?

Vegan Aloo Keema ~ Mince & Potato Curry

As far as vegan curry recipes go, this is a pretty easy one with a manageable list of vegan ingredients.

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Posted in International vegan cuisine, Italian, Potatoes, Vegan

One Pot Vegan Italian Sausage Bake

We have to eat. It’s a necessity for all that messy breathing, heart beating, brain function stuff. But that doesn’t mean we always have the time, the mental or physical energy to spend thirty minutes in the kitchen whipping up something nutritious and delicious.

You can opt for nutritious only, but what would be the point?

One of my favorite things to create when I’m not in the mood to cook, is a one pot meal. You can prep as you go, rinsing, chopping and weighing the food before tossing it into a casserole dish. Season everything together and toss, then all you have to do is pop it in the oven.

Alternately, you can cook any one pot vegan meal on a baking sheet if you want to diversify the flavor profile of the different vegetables.

Either way, it’s a lot less dishes and the oven does all the work. Where’s the flaw in that vegan recipe?

vegan sausage and potato veggie bake

This is a one pot vegan meal that you add to the rotation because the ingredients are so simple.

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Posted in Asian Food, Bowls, Grains, International vegan cuisine, Plant Based, Sauces & Creams, Vegan

Vegan Takeout Recipes ~ Mongolian Tofu & Rice

When you’re in the mood for a nice hot vegan meal that won’t have you in the kitchen all day, here’s my advice: grab a grain, a protein, a vegetable and make a quick sauce. In thirty minutes (give or take) you’ll have a delicious vegan meal that will make you feel good about yourself.

Bonus points, it’ll satisfy your hunger.

If you’re familiar with the popular Chinese takeout dish, Mongolian beef, you’ll be very happy you popped over to The Spicy Spatula today, because we have veganized this popular takeout dish and made it our very own.

The great thing about popular vegan takeout dishes, is that you can make them as simple or as complicated as you want, depending on your time constraints. As you can see from the photo above, the ingredient list isn’t all that complicated but it’s the sauce that gives this Mongolian Tofu most of the flavor.

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Posted in Dips, International vegan cuisine, Sauces & Creams, Vegan

Weird But Good Vegan Recipes: Spicy Tofu & Sauerkraut

Let’s keep it real, when it comes to cooking not every meal can be a gourmet masterpiece or the very definition of healthy and nutritious. We hope for one of those of two, but sometimes you just want what you want. Right?

That’s pretty much how this easy vegan meal came about. I felt like having something spicy but I didn’t want to go crazy with calories and I didn’t want to make something that would cost too much time in the kitchen because I was furiously trying to get my book properly formatted so the paperback could be completed.

Update/Shameless promotion: How Could I ForgetĀ is finally ready to order in paperback and digital!

Luckily for me, I found some leftover sauerkraut and decided…why the heck not? I love sauerkraut actually. I spent a part of my childhood in Wisconsin where I experienced many Oktoberfest celebrations and learned a lot about German and Polish culture. Then, I went on to spend about 8 years living in Germany, so yeah, sauerkraut is my jam! But, I’ve never used it out side of my seitan & kraut style recipes. So I did what any internet savvy home cook does, I consulted Google to find out other ways to use sauerkraut and what to pair it with.

Turns out, it makes an excellent side dish, with only a little prep time.

Since we’ve talked so much about the kraut, let’s start with that. I like to rinse it a little just so the taste isn’t quite so vinegar-y, then drain and set aside. Chop up one onion and a few cloves of garlic to saute (in oil or water) and when they start to crisp and turn brown, add the kraut. Cook until warm OR you can just turn off the stove and stir together if you want the full health benefits of fermented foods.

While the onions & garlic are cooking, you should re-hydrate your soya (TVP) if that’s what you’re using because that’s why I used in this easy vegan recipe, but you can always use whatever vegan protein floats your boat. I used the big pieces because there’s a lot of surface to cover in yummy spicy sauce and because I wanted a reason to break out my new air fryer!

While the soy chunks are in the air fryer, I added a bunch of spices to a bowl along with soy sauce and just enough olive oil to turn it into a paste/sauce that would work for a tossed coating.Ā My spices: smoky & spicy paprika, garlic granules, ground ginger, harissa powder, piri piri, turmeric and cumin. When the timer beeps, remove the crispy vegan tofu wings and toss in the spice mixture.

If you’re my kind of vegan home cook and you tend to make foods a little on theĀ spicierĀ side, consider adding a cooling sauce for those in your home who don’t love spicy vegan foods the way you do.

I opted for a veggiegurt sauce with lemon juice, cumin, parsley and oregano. The hubs said it helped with the heat…a lot.

If you’re in the market for quick and easy vegan recipes, you will be happy to know that this recipe took about 30 minutes and that includes entering the ingredients into Cronometer.

What do you like to pair with your vegan hot wings?

Posted in Asian Food, Curry, International vegan cuisine, Noodles, Plant Based, Vegan

Spicy Soya Bulgogi

Most days I know what I’m going to eat because I am a planner. I plan out the menu each week, create a corresponding grocery list complete with a few snack options for those nights I feel like munching. So yeah, I plan things.

But this week as I sat in the living room waiting for my husband to finished getting dressed while I reconciled with menu with my shopping list app, I found a video for Bulgogi, which I haven’t had since we lived in Los Angeles…a million years ago. Of course this dish was made semi-traditionally and by that, I mean it contained meat, which was no problem because I recently got my hands on Inedit brand textured soya, which I’ve used before but only the big chunks and the cubes. It’s a great dehydrated soy product that you simmer in water to hydrate and then cook per your recipe instructions.

Slowly this vegan bulgogi idea was coming together.

As with any good vegan-ized recipe, you have to be careful because although you can totally make the dish, you might have to juggle around some of the steps to make it work.Ā Step one:Ā get the soy granules into the water and get them going. The package says it needs 20-25 minutes but I think about 10 to 12 is sufficient.

Okay, so here’s the thing about making bulgogi. Mostly it is a spicy beef dish and home cooks like myself often use some sort of ground up product, rather than whole pieces, and you should know up front that I didn’t do a big deep dive into the history of the dish or anything so complicated. I saw a recipe on YouTube and made some adjustments for my plant based diet and weight loss goals.

Now, that’s out of the way…let’s keep going.

My ingredients: shallots, onion, scallions, ginger, Thai curry paste, piripiri peppers, ginger and portobello mushroom caps, just to enhance the satiety of the dish. Oh and I used ramen style noodles instead of rice. And four leftover grape tomatoes for the liquid and lycopene.

The mushrooms went into the skillet first so cook out some of the water before adding the soy texture, which also has some water that you’ll want to cook out for some recipes and keep for others. I planned for a spicy-ish sauce so I wanted them fairly dry. Next went the shallots, onions and ginger.

Add seasoning as you need it, later adding the garlic and tomatoes near the last few minutes of cooking. Then grab a bowl and whip up the bulgogi sauce, which for me contained: soy sauce, That curry paste, hot chili paste, harissa powder, curry, cumin and lemongrass powder. Toss in some water and cornstarch if you want a thicker sauce to coat the noodles, and dump it in the pot…but not before the noodle or rice water gets started cooking.

When you’re ready to put everything together,Ā then you can dump the sauce into the skillet and bring to a boil Simmer until the sauce is thickened and taste for extra flavor. The sesame seeds were a last minute addition after I put the recipe into Cronometer and saw that I had some calorie wiggle room, but in total I added 5 grams of sesame seeds.

 

This is a pretty easy vegan dish to make but like many of my favorite Asian recipes, it does have a bit of prep time. There’s a lot of chopping to be done, so make time for it and you won’t regret it.

I promise!

What recipe do you want to see next? Drop a comment below.